Big Pots, Shellac Resist, and the Flu

Why did I make big pots the first day of the flu?  Well I knew I was only going to get sicker, so while I could, I made ten little pitchers, five large urns for resist work, and three other large urns.  The second day of the flu I made lids, and slept. The third day I trimmed all the pots, and slept.  The fourth day I slept, trimmed lids, joined knobs, and carved urns.  The remaining ten days I’ve slept, carved urns, took photo’s and slept…  and vowed to get a flu shot next year!

Here are some nice shots of the urns in process.  It’s a very long process, between the throwing, trimming, and carving the feet and rim.  Once the pot dries completely liquid wax resist is brushed on to create the floral pattern.  (This process is known as shellac resist or hydro abrasion).  Then comes the long process of rubbing away the clay with a sponge, (which I thought would be a nice sitting down job while not having much energy).  Where there is no resist the clay slowly gets etched away.

willow watching tall urns freshly thrown

Just finished carving_lucy fagella Tall Urns Drying_Lucy Fagella

The carving process_lucy fagella details_lucy fagella Large Urns Drying_lucy fagella

Here is a finished mini version of the large urn… a little keepsake in my son Andrew’s hands. To see more of these and other urns visit my website and or LuciaUrns on etsy.

White on White Petite Keepsake_Lucy Fagella 

If you want to see a nice little video on this method, check out Ron Philbeck  , “Hydro Abrasion”  He explains it very well!  http://youtu.be/d_HHrNdPGIk

 

Useful Pottery… that doesn’t last

We are living in an age where so many things serve a purpose for a short while. Many of the gadgets we use are actually meant to break after a certain time period so we buy more, or the latest version of that item. Yet the materials they are made from last forever.

When I think of pottery I think of lasting forever,  yet I love to think of ways that clay can be useful and go back to the earth.  (More to come on permanence/impermanence soon with my biodegradable urns). For now, two things to share, a new biodegradable urn, and a wonderful blog post about clay chai cups from India!

 

 

My New Biodegradable Clay Urns

This past summer was a very productive summer for me, designing new biodegradable urns.  I started making biodegradable urns two summers ago using recycled paper, re-claimed clay and wild flowers, (see website).  Although I liked the urns the timing wasn’t working so well, because the flowers that worked well were only available for short periods of time.  This really limited the time of the year I could make these urns.  I knew within the first year as they began to sell, that I had to make these differently. 

My first love before pottery was printmaking, especially mono-printing.  This past winter I took a workshop with Catherine White, she had us create mono prints and collage on paper.  My love of mono-printing was revived!  Two of my potter friends Mary Barringer, and Tiff Hilton, who also took the workshop decided we would meet at my studio monthly to continue the painting, and collage work.  From there, I began to incorporate these mono-printed papers into my urns!

 I have been busy taking photos, re-vamping my biodegradable urn page of my website, and setting up a new etsy shop,  (both not quite ready yet, but very soon!)  Here is a little preview of a few urns, from the Blue Series!  More to come soon!

 

 

Making Urns

It is now March and I have been meaning to write this post since January.  

January and February is my time to play catch up making urns.  This year was no different,  except much busier than other years.  This is my 5th year in the cremation urn business.  Making urns is very meaningful for me… I am making something for a very difficult time in a person’s life.  Sometimes it is hard, I listen over the phone, or though emails, while a person is grieving,  or put a hand on a shoulder when someone comes to the studio.  Most times I’m sending out an urn through the internet, without knowing who the urn is for.  So often I get an email after the urn was received…  people are so grateful for a handmade object, something of beauty.  When my parents died 12 years ago, it was all the kind gestures of others that helped get me through.  It was also the beauty of nature, or art, that took me away, and soothed my soul.  It was at that time I first thought about making urns.  I hoped someday that I could help others get through the difficulty of losing someone you love, by creating something useful and beautiful.  At the same time, do what I love most… make pots.

If you’re interested in reading more about my urns check out Studio Potter Winter 2009 and or The Crafts Report, November 2008

Here is a slide show of a large classic urn form in process.  To see all the finished urns visit Lucia Pottery.

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